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Friend wants DD to come over by herself - Page 2

post #21 of 88

I would be on the suspicious camp as well.   I don't know why there would be a need to get the child to come alone, if she wanted a break, she would more likely ask you to watch her child I would think.  I think it's a weird request. 

post #22 of 88

I think like others have stated, she might just be looking to have the kids play together without having to do a big formal gathering. However, this is something where you have to trust your gut, get to know them better. My 6 YO is allowed to have play dates without me at 2 other homes. There is someone asking if she can come to his house to play and I know from another mom that there isn't a lot of supervision there, so I am stalling.

post #23 of 88

I guess I'm with the pps who don't see anything inherently suspicious in her invitation.  I can totally see a) not wanting to host other adults (I too am an introvert), b) having a playmate for my kid as a way of "giving me a break", c) having the hope that if we do the playdate at my house one time then the next time maybe the other parents would offer to host my kid for a playdate, d) having the idea that the other parents needed a break for whatever reason so wanting to offer that without overtly offering it (if that makes sense). 

 

I also agree that the way Dee is phrasing her invitation would make a difference as to whether flags were being raised.  It seems a bit tricky as you are getting the filtered-through-dh version, and as you mentioned your dh is particularly sensitive/cautious due to his past experiences.  His own interpretation/understanding of her invite might be a bit skewed (perhaps overly focussing on the "alone" part and not hearing much else) because of where he's coming from.

 

post #24 of 88

Could you call and talk to the mom? I think unless you actually hear how she's phrased it, you won't be comfortable in your decision. Your husband's filter is set very high because of his past experiences, so you need to see what your gut tells you when she talks.

 

Age 4-5 is when my kids started having playdates without a parent present. While I'd find it odd to have a first playdate at age 5 without the parents, I wouldn't find it out of the ordinary, and if the kids have played together before, I wouldn't find it odd at all. I can easily see why having kids over to play is different from having a family over. It's a different kind of playdate, and if she doesn't feel like entertaining, it makes sense to me. It may well be a break from her in that she doesn't need to entertain her child, even if she does have to monitor them.

post #25 of 88

Children coming over by themselves after age 4 is the norm. TBH it would irritate me to also have to entertain the parents every.single.time the kids wanted to play together. We call it 'babysitting by playdate' - the kids are entertained and I can get some work/cleaning done. I also don't see anything inherently suspicious and given your DH's history of abuse, I'd say that his spidey sense is all out of whack - he's filtering really innocent things with the ears of an abused child, so everything looks like potential abuse. That's really the exception, not the norm in the world. If your child is verbal, even more so to not be worried about what might happen.

 

Sorry, I think it's fine and that your DH needs counselling. I'd hate to see the trajectory of that thought pattern as your child grew older and came into constant contact with strangers - your DH might have a breakdown or something.

post #26 of 88

I see nothing weird with the request, that is a pretty common request.  She may have an icky feeling about your dh because he seems too overprotective and she is misinterpreting that as a sign of possible abuse, especially if your child seems to be more cautious than other kids or he shadows her a lot when at gatherings with them and that would explain why she isn't taking you up on having her child over at your house.

post #27 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I see nothing weird with the request, that is a pretty common request.  She may have an icky feeling about your dh because he seems too overprotective and she is misinterpreting that as a sign of possible abuse, especially if your child seems to be more cautious than other kids or he shadows her a lot when at gatherings with them and that would explain why she isn't taking you up on having her child over at your house.


Yikes. If there were any possibility of anyone feeling like THAT about my dh, I definitely wouldn't want such a person in my life or around my child! I mean, if that were the case then, yuck, she might be trying to get the OP's child alone to find out what "really" goes on in the OP's home "behind closed doors." Yuck, yuck, yuck. I honestly wasn't thinking the other mom had any weird motive until I read this thought. Double yuck!

 

Of course, I don't really think it's likely that she has an icky feeling about the OP's husband. After all, he is the one she's been putting all the requests to. What I did feel, OP, when you said that she'd been saying all this to your husband and not to you, was that I would find that very annoying. Of course, I know nothing about your family situation, but in my family and the other families I know, moms usually handle all that kind of stuff. I'm not saying that's the way it "has" to be or anything, but if someone were trying to handle all this stuff with my husband, I'd feel kind of like they were trying to override me.

 

Not out of any weird motive, but just because maybe they might be assuming my husband would be more likely to say "Sure," and then it might be harder for me to back out of it if I didn't feel comfortable. It does seem more likely that she just wants a break, though kind of weird that she keeps asking your dd if she's ready rather than just dropping off her own son.
 

post #28 of 88

I think your dh has his wits about him and if there is a gut instinct there to protect your dd I would say go with it! He sounds like a parent who is aware of the dangers that are out there and cares enough about his daughter to question other's motives. It would make my tail bone tingle too, she sounds like she has an agenda and I am not sure of the innocence of it due to her own son not being willing to go to your house- she should naturally assume your daughter feels likewise not continue to persist in pressuring her to feel ready. It also strikes me as strange that this adult woman ventured so far as to ask your daughter a second time rather than ask you, that is certainly not polite imo.

post #29 of 88
Thread Starter 

Thanks again for replies. Nothing new to add, just had the urge to reply I guess. While my DH might be overprotective about this particular request, I doubt Dee is feeling weird vibes from him because it's really just this request that is making him feel weird (and whatever else you're thinking, like DH doesn't let DD do anything without him breathing down her neck, isn't so - at the playground he is more than happy to relax on a bench and let her run off and play, etc.). Who knows, though. I think like most others do, that she just wants to get some social time for her son while getting a break for herself. The fact that the requests are going to DH and not me is not weird - DH is the primary parent and will take DD places while I'm working. So he is the one to run into her at the usual haunts that parents go to. It's not like she's calling DH's cell phone and not mine or something (in fact, there are no calls at all, things have all been arranged from face to face). Not relevant to this discussion, but it just so happens that Dee's husband and I are usually the ones to run into each other in different kinds of circumstances.

 

I tentatively brought up the subject with DH in an indirect way and he didn't want to talk about it and I let it drop. I don't think anything needs to be done, anyway. If DH were weirdly overprotective overall, I'd be concerned, but it just seems to be this particular thing that he's digging in about. I think this will just play itself out naturally one way or another - either Dee will take a hint and let it drop for a while and then maybe the idea will seem more natural in time. Or Dee will persist and make ME start to wonder what's up. Or the friendship will fade out if it's not meeting Dee's needs (meaning that she's not looking for so much adult socializing, only for her son, and if we don't seem to be the right fit for what she's looking for then I'm sure things will fade out naturally). If that happens, that's fine, that's life. It's gotta work for everybody.

 

A PP referenced DH's "spidey sense" being out of whack - that is a cool term for it. I dunno if it's out of whack or spot on for this issue, but he sure does have a spidey sense for people, that's for sure. I've even observed other people be impressed with his ability. But I don't think his spidey sense is going off for Dee. I think it's just the request. But that's just my guess.

 

And who knows, maybe it is still a little early anyway, DD has now been over their house twice and Dee's son over ours once. Maybe enough for many people, but not like it's been a ridiculous number of times. Well, we'll see how it unfolds.

post #30 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I see nothing weird with the request, that is a pretty common request.  She may have an icky feeling about your dh because he seems too overprotective and she is misinterpreting that as a sign of possible abuse, especially if your child seems to be more cautious than other kids or he shadows her a lot when at gatherings with them and that would explain why she isn't taking you up on having her child over at your house.


Yikes. If there were any possibility of anyone feeling like THAT about my dh, I definitely wouldn't want such a person in my life or around my child! I mean, if that were the case then, yuck, she might be trying to get the OP's child alone to find out what "really" goes on in the OP's home "behind closed doors." Yuck, yuck, yuck. I honestly wasn't thinking the other mom had any weird motive until I read this thought. Double yuck! 



 

This hardly seems like it would be a fair reaction since the OPs family has suspicions about the people who asked in the first place.  It's OK for person A to suspect person B, but it's then terrible for person B to have any suspicions about person A?

post #31 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I see nothing weird with the request, that is a pretty common request.  She may have an icky feeling about your dh because he seems too overprotective and she is misinterpreting that as a sign of possible abuse, especially if your child seems to be more cautious than other kids or he shadows her a lot when at gatherings with them and that would explain why she isn't taking you up on having her child over at your house.


Yikes. If there were any possibility of anyone feeling like THAT about my dh, I definitely wouldn't want such a person in my life or around my child! I mean, if that were the case then, yuck, she might be trying to get the OP's child alone to find out what "really" goes on in the OP's home "behind closed doors." Yuck, yuck, yuck. I honestly wasn't thinking the other mom had any weird motive until I read this thought. Double yuck! 



 

This hardly seems like it would be a fair reaction since the OPs family has suspicions about the people who asked in the first place.  It's OK for person A to suspect person B, but it's then terrible for person B to have any suspicions about person A?

 

I agree with that.  I was very overprotective and hovered a lot when my dd was little because I had issues of my own and was very nervous about things (my mother encouraged that too because she didn't feel like she had protected me enough so it made it hard to resist feeling like I needed to hover and protect too much).  I did put a lot of people off by my hovering and didn't realize it until a mom of one of dd's friends brought it up.  I have worked very hard since then to not be that mom and I have succeeded for the most part.  I don't know the full extent of what people thought, but I do know that my dd got less opportunities for making friends despite really being outgoing and wanting to make friends until I realized what I was doing and worked on it.  I don't think that it is something to cut people out of your life over, I think it is something to be aware of and to work on. 

 

Also, I too was on the bench at the park, but I hovered in a lot of other ways even from the bench and your husband may be also.  It is something that you may want to point out when he is more receptive so he can reflect on whether he needs to work on that aspect of his personality.  Abuse has long ongoing effects that shape our actions even without us meaning for it to.  Being made aware of how it shaped my reactions helped me and my dd.
 

post #32 of 88

If it was us... I'd expect she doesn't want to cook. My aunts (and I do it too) often used to invite us over 'just us'. Inviting the parents elevates a the occasion from ritz crackers and cut fruit to tea or a full meal.

 

Also how/when was the invite given? My dh and I 'split shifts' so he is there quite often in the afternoon. We are pretty conservative, and I can imagine a scenario where another SAHM may have felt ok having a playdate with my kid in the afternoon, but not my kid *and* my DH. (And there is nothing creepy about my DH... we just run in conservative circles.)

post #33 of 88

Motive? I don't understand. My friends and I swap childcare like this, it's a great playdate for the kids & gives the adults a break for a few hours. This is normal behavior, in my opinion. My son has been having sleep overs at 2 different friends' houses since he was 4, and finds them to be really fun. We enjoy having friends' kids over here b/c it gives our son a chance to share his room/toys w/ another kid (a sense of pride/fun for him), and b/c it keeps our only child occupied w/ play for a few hours. :)

post #34 of 88


Yes, since you're looking for a motive, this is the most obvious one. It's why my friends and I let our kids visit alone. It's a break for the parents, and fun for the kids. I'm just so surprised that anyone would suspect anything else if they have been friends for 7 years. The mom has probably asked several times b/c she's ready for the next stage, one of some kid (and parent) independence, and she knows that your kids would have fun together. Do you think perhaps that you & your husband are a tad overprotective? Something to consider.

Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post


I told DH I thought Dee wanted DD to come over by herself to give Dee a sort of a break. Since the kids play together so well, they could entertain each other while Dee maybe got things done around the house or did a little reading, knowing she could just keep an ear out for the kids. The reason I thought that was because I've had that urge myself :) To have a kid come over and engage DD while I did my own stuff, and a playmate that fit well enough that there aren't fights or trouble is hitting the jackpot.

 

post #35 of 88

Oh, this explains your husband's reaction. I'm sorry that this brings up bad memories and feelings. It may take him a little longer to trust other people, perfectly understandable.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post

Yes, there was abuse in the home when my husband was a child.

post #36 of 88

mamazee, I actually wasn't saying that anyone should be suspicious of anyone else in this scenario. I think I should have been clearer. It just struck me that One_Girl's post, which seemed to be an attempt to reassure seashells, would have had the complete opposite effect on me.

 

seashells, since your husband is the main one accompanying your daughter for playdates, it does make total sense that she'd be making these arrangements with him and not you. I apologize for thinking that her going to him might be some attempt to override you. And yet, I do agree with what Mammajamma said about it not being polite for her to go directly to your dd about this. I do think this could be an attempt to force the issue, because it puts a hesitant parent in the position of no longer being able to say, "She's just not ready to be away from me yet," and having to either give in come right out and say, "I'M the one who's not completely comfortable with the situation!"

 

I also agree with what Mammajamma said about this woman pushing the issue with your daughter when she's not willing to push it with her own son.

post #37 of 88

Hmm, the whole gender thing DOES give me fruit for thought.

 

I can totally see a SAHM feeling a little weird having a man (even a male friend) over during the day while her partner was gone.  Not necessarily even because she worries about the friend or because her partner cares about that, but appearances or feeling weird because of the way she was raised.

 

And...well, given the amount of prejudice and suspicion I have seen on MDC towards male caregivers and babysitters, that I believe is reflected in the general population, I wonder if perhaps that does not play into things here.  A lot of people who are squicked out because of the alone request, I wonder how many of them would allow their kiddo to go over alone to a house where the supervisor will be a man?

 

While I am often frustrated with the bias here, because it's unusual I do think that sometimes people are hesitate without even really thinking about why.

post #38 of 88

Great points, Tigerchild! Now I'm actually wondering, for those of you who think the OP's dh is overreacting by not feeling comfortable by this woman's repeated requests for him to send his child over alone, would you also see it as overreacting if it were a father requesting that just the OP's child and not the parents come to visit in his home? You know, sometimes dads might prefer a crackers-n-fruit playdate over having to cook, too.

post #39 of 88

My child has played at 4 different houses where the supervising parent is a dad. He has had sleep-overs w/ 2 of these kids, and sometimes the dad is present rather than the mom. I trust these dads, and got to know them for a few months to years beforehand, of course. And in all these cases, the moms are great & have excellent communication and relationships w/ their husbands. My child seems happy and healthy, without any trauma. So I feel very, very comfortable w/ our decisions.

 

So personally, my comfort level is based on how well I know the parent, my gut feelings, and my child's response. Gender is a low-level consideration initially, and then becomes an irrelevant factor once a decision is made as to whether our child has a relationship or not w/ a particular family.

post #40 of 88

My dd is often at playdates with just a father there as the responsible adult, to answer mammal_mama's question.  I think it's fair for parents to want their children to be able to play with friends without having to entertain the parents, and I think it's unusual starting around the age of this child to expect to be at the home where your child is playing.  I think this is the beginning of something that will be a regular occurrence, and the OP's child will not have as many play opportunities as he could if he isn't allowed to play at friends' houses without a parent.

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